From Cannock Chase to Snowdonia
Our Go Ape Cannock tribe made their way from their base at Cannock Chase to the Snowdon hills, all on two wheels! Here, they tell their tale of the uphill struggles, the wrong turns, cycling in 30 degree heat – and the bacon butties!
Into the darkness
At 12:15am 4 enthusiastic instructors prepare to set off into the darkness of Cannock Chase for the first of 130ish miles on the way to Wales. Just can’t help wondering how long the smiles will last.
4:45am 50 miles Sunrise – Phil had hidden flapjacks and drinks on the side of the road a few days before. This was our reactions when we found them but it was short lived as the roads from this point on started pointing decidedly upwards rather than flat.
5:50am 69 Miles Llangollen– After a long brutal uphill struggle we made it to Llangollen way ahead of schedule. Communication with the valuable support team began to make sure we were all in the same place at the same time. A slight navigational error on the bike teams part saw us in the same place but on two different roads, a mistake that was quickly rectified with a sharp about turn.
Nearing the bacon butties
6:15am 75 Miles A5 Climbs– The sun and the temperature started to rise as we climbed deep into Wales following the river Dee. The team were starting to feel fatigued and the conversation focused on keeping the team motivated to get as far as the well deserved bacon butties
7:10am 83 Miles Corwen – The sun was up and the mood was lifting as we passed the half way point with legs still feeling good. Temperature was still rising and it was looking to be the hottest day of the year
7:45am 86 Miles Breakfast Time!!! – The van crew, who were also part of the climb team, provided a massive pick me up to the bikers with bacon butties and coffee at the road side as the cyclists took a well deserved breakfast break. The whole team was regenerated and the cyclists set off again, with the van crew following as we finally got to a downhill part for the long fast decent into Betws-y-coed.
The final climb
12:00pm 130 Miles and an unbreakable bond has been made! The final climb up the Llanberis Pass and arrived to a fan fair of support made by our valuable support team. The importance and significance of the final climb wasn’t lot on the whole team.
The shadow of Snowdon and the increased temperature soon removed the smiles off our faces as the peak of the mountain revealed its self from the clouds.
12:15pm Mt Snowdon. Support team and cyclists combined to tackle the arduous 1085m climb in 30 degree heat. The views were spectacular but fatigue was starting to take its toll on the bikers bodies as the van crew tried their hardest to motivate them for ‘just another hour’.
14:00pm We are nearly at the top but smiling was starting to become a unnecessary waste of energy. For some reason the support team were looking remarkably fresh and helping boost morale but at this point cyclists knees and bodies were beginning to show the signs of a long night
Challenge accepted…Challenge complete.
14 hours 34 minutes it took GoApe Team Cannock to ride 130 miles and climb 1085m.
£1000 raised for The Outward Bound Trust.
A massive thank you needs to be said to the cyclists for being mad enough, the climb/van crew for being so dedicated and for the whole team at Cannock who took part in the bake sale to raise extra cash. Also to Jo Mclaran for making the whole thing so much easier with the supply of the minibus and the deputy manager at go ape Cannock for making sure we had what we needed to make this big challenge possible. Live Life Adventurously.
“Only those who risk going too far can possibly find out how far they can go” T.S Elliot